Locking in players before they reach free agency has become the new norm for Major League Baseball. Prominently, the Houston Astros did it with third baseman Alex Bregman during Spring Training, and even earlier on Tuesday, the Atlanta Braves and Ronald Acuña Jr. settled, as did the Rockies and German Marquez
The Toronto Blue Jays, on the same day they dealt Kevin Pillar out west, are now the latest team to follow suit.
According to Sportsnet's Shi Davidi, the Blue Jays and outfielder Randal Grichuk have agreed to terms on a five-year, $52 million contract extension. The contract contains no opt-outs or player options.
Grichuk's salary for the 2019 season was originally set at $5 million. Now, with this reworked deal, Grichuk will earn $7 million for the season. In 2020, Grichuk will make $12 million, followed by a $9.3 million salary from 2021-23.
With the Kevin Pillar trade happening earlier in the day, Toronto had big plans to build their new core of young players, and Grichuk was obviously in those plans. The 27-year-old outfielder's new deal will cover three free agency seasons.
Grichuk will now be the team's primary center fielder for much of the next decade, as they look to build the remainder of their young